Simple Sisters Series: Circles of Trust and Interests

In life, we are not called to be passive recipients of friendship, but actively engaged with each other in meaningful relationships. We were created for community living. No, it doesn't mean you're out here looking for a whole herd of new friends....all the Introverts can breathe again! I know!!! I am one. We don't need a whole bunch of people in the inner circle of our hearts...but we need some, where 2 or 3 are gathered, including Jesus. So, at least one human! 

I believe isolation is a trap of the enemy. We were created as parts of a whole...we need community. Within that community, there will be heart-shaped circles. There can be circles of interest and circles of trust.

Proverbs 27:17 says, "As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another." God invites us to explore the transformative potential of authentic Christian friendships. Imagine two swords being sharpened against each other. The process isn't always smooth or comfortable, but it's necessary for both to become more effective. We glean from rubbing up against one another, edifying the heart, mind and soul of the person in order to grow, allowing God to chisel, refine, love the other, with His love, through us as His trusted instrument. Cuz really, we are not growing to grow our own Kingdom...we are going to grow His Kingdom come!

Let's talk How To Create circles....

Wisdom and discernment are two ways we create healthy boundaries for circles to be created, and properly cared for. 

Circles of interest:
Things we have in common, such a Mom Life, Work or Ministry Life, Hobbies, Community Groups, etc. These circles can be any size. 

Circles of trust: 
Over the years, wisdom helped me create and cultivate inner circles for trust...the deeper the trust, the closer into the deeper part of my heart they could enter in to where the space is smaller, smaller because it needs greater care, energy, vulnerability, and trust. 

How many?!?
There's not an approved number of how many people can be in our closest space. I believe everyone will be different and every season will be different. Ultimately, it is the Lord who brings hearts together, so He will lead us to those Divinely led relationships in His timing, according to His perfect will for them, nd for us.

Real Christian friendships involve mutual growth. It is not selfish or self-seeking.So, how do we nurture these iron-sharpening friendships?

  1. Cultivate Vulnerability: Open your heart to trusted friends. Share your struggles, doubts, and victories. This vulnerability creates space for genuine connection and growth.
  2. Practice Active Listening: Really hear your friends. Listen not just to respond, but to understand. This deepens empathy and strengthens bonds.
  3. Offer Graceful Truth: When you see a friend straying from God's path, speak truth in love. It might be uncomfortable, but it's an act of genuine care.
  4. Encourage Spiritual Disciplines: Pray together, study Scripture together, serve together. These shared experiences deepen your friendship and your faith.
  5. Celebrate Growth: Rejoice in each other's spiritual victories, no matter how small. This fosters a positive environment for continued growth.
  6. Extend Grace: Remember, we're all works in progress. Be quick to forgive and slow to judge.
  7. Commit to Consistency: Deep friendships aren't built overnight. Regular, intentional time together is crucial.
Remember, the goal isn't perfection, but progress. As you sharpen each other, as His Instruments, you both become more effective tools in God's hands. It's also important to recognize that different friendships may serve different purposes in our lives. Some friends might challenge us intellectually, others emotionally or spiritually. Every person is an appointment in our life and the assignment will become clearer the more you walk together.

As you navigate these friendships, it goes without saying, keep Christ at the center. He is the One who allowed them for such a time as this. He is the ultimate example of a perfect friend – loving unconditionally, speaking truth in love, gentle, kind, hope-filled, faithful, guarding, self-controlled, wise and intentional. This is the kind of friend I want to be too. I am not perfect, no one is, but in prayer nd petition and ll the grace in the world, we are invited to create heart shaped circles in our life! 

In cultivating these iron-sharpening, heart-softening friendships, we not only enrich our own lives but also strengthen the body of Christ. As we grow together, we shine God's light in the world around us s one of His Lights to lead and show The Way.

Let's pray: Lord, thank you for the gift of friendship nd ultimately, Yours. Lord, we seek Sisters to do life with. Help us to be friends who sharpen and encourage one another in faith. Guide our words and actions to reflect Your love. May we be a sweet aroma to You as we stir one another's heats in Your Name. Because of Your Sweetest of Love, Amen.

If today's encouragement hugged your HEART today, let me know in the comments or meet me over
 in my Facebook Sisterhood Community! Feel free to share this blog with a friend who needs a heart hug too!
This is how YOU get to hug my HEART back!

Heart Hugs and Blessings,

When You Think YOU are the Error...This was the Mess of Me

When You Think YOU are the Error...This was the Mess of Me
Wow, it's been over 14 years....if I am being honest, that fact alone makes me both angry with myself yet so grateful to be here in this blessing of hope and healing, in the overcoming of fear, anxiety, insecurity and less-than-the-bless.

The very things I thought I would never do, I am. What I thought wasn't for me, was. I have never been so glad to be so wrong in all my life! 

How to be Brave as a Christian

I just didn’t know I could change. I thought I was just me. When it’s all you know, it’s simply all you know. This is why speaking life is so important along with Sisterhood, Mentorships, personal development and community.

Born into the Cradle Roll at our church by a military Dad and Friend-to-Everyone Mom, “going above and beyond and doing the right thing" was basically my DNA. You add in my shy, insecure personality and there ya have your official Shy Girl, Holy Rolly, Goodie Two Shoes, always trying to be perfect and pure, not causing any issues, church girl.

I accepted my Less-Than-Ness, fueled in the comparison game of observing the brilliance and beauty of everyone else seemingly living the perfect life. While my mindset was completely wrong, my heart was pure, desiring to be better and live "right" before God, family and others. It would be many, many years later I learned to live a life of Grace and honor rather than perfection and perception.

You don’t have to go very far online or out in the world to discover the next newest thing you don’t have and why you (apparently) need it now!

You can't help but wonder if it could be true. Those of us who struggle with insecurity are the perfect customer for these commercials. We are willing to try any and every thing out there in the quest for becoming better.

After years of self-doubt and constant fear of judgement, I collapsed under the pressure falling prostrate into a pit. Thankfully God knew I was heading that way, and He had already lined it with grace. 

Grace softened my fall. It bruised me, and scared me, but it didn't kill me. 

Grace caught me. 

Grace said Just be you. Grace said Life is short. Grace said Worship, not worry. Grace said Fear not! Grace said I am capable and you are in My hands. Grace said Follow Me, not them. Grace said My grace is sufficient enough for you! Grace said It’s Time! Get up and go!

This is one of the things in my life I wish I would have learned sooner. I wish I would have understood Grace and more important God’s love for me. I wish I would have learned about His heart sooner rather than in my 30’s. I am forever grateful for the season in the pit, as painful as it was, I was refined and chiseled as I tumbled about. 

Friend, know God loves you so much and He is near. Be courageous and confident in His Love and live in this Gift of Grace. Take time to be still and know, asking and seeking His heart for you. 

By grace, you are saved and held. By grace, you are brave. By grace, you are whole! Yo are fearfully and wonderfully made with a Divine purpose meant only for YOU!! You are YOU for this very reason! He has equipped you for such a time as this!! Rise up and Go in Grace!

"But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me." 
2 Corinthians 12:9 ESV

If today's encouragement hugged your HEART today, let me know in the comments or meet me over
 in my Facebook Sisterhood Community! Feel free to share this blog with a friend who needs a heart hug too!
This is how YOU get to hug my HEART back!

Heart Hugs and Blessings,

3 Basic Ways to Help Manage Stress for Yourself or Your Student

Not every person handles stress the same so be brave and have compassion enough to ASK!!! Don't assume they can handle it alone and don't need you. if it's YOU, ASK for some Love to diffuse your stress ball! 

It's really really hard to ask for support or a simple hug in the name of All Togetherness when you are the Peace Maker in the Home but I am challenging you this time to seek it out and let God bless you with Love through the hands and feet He has placed around you for such a time as this. Don't stuff your feelings. 

Pray, Praise and Pause!!! Receive the LOVE for the health of your soul. Tis the season to REJOICE! You've Got This!!! 

Mothers Day Encouragement for the Weary Mom

It's Mother's Day Month. I imagine the collective sigh, the deep breath, the joy, the exhaustion. Mom Life is beautifully hard.